JED - December 2016 - 63

TECHNOLOGY SURVEY
FLIGHTLINE AND PORTABLE EW SIMULATORS
By Ollie Holt

The survey received responses on RF, UV, IR and laser simulators. Some companies had some of each type.
The results were grouped into simulators of a similar
type for ease of comparison.
The spectrum column identifies the operational
spectrum of the simulator. Some are single-spectrum
systems, while others operate in multiple spectrums.
The operational spectrum or spectrums define operational range within the spectrum where threat signals
can be simulated.
The "Coupled" column defines the method of injecting the signal into the EW system to be tested or evaluated. For RF systems, the simplest method is radiating
into the antenna with or without a coupler attached
to the antenna. For flightline testing, a coupler can be
used that is designed to attach over the installed EW
system antennas. If free-space (radiated) RF is used,
then the spatial component is created just by the
placement of the radiated signal. For UV, IR and laser
systems, free-space radiation is the method of signal
injection. Again the spatial component for UV, IR or
laser signals is controlled by the radiators location and
signal amplitude.
The "Number of Signals" column defines the number
of different types of signals the simulator could generate. The column specifies the total number of different
signals the simulator can be programmed to emulate. It
does not tell you how many signals it can create simultaneously. The next column, which is the "Number of
Simultaneous Signals," tells you how many signals the
simulator can create at a single time. This allows the
simulator to create a dense environment of more than
a single threat. Typically, for pulsed-RF signal simulations, more than one threat can be simulated with
a single RF signal generator, but with some dropped
pulses. Most multi-signal simulations will attempt to
simulate all the pulses of a signal, but will have to drop
some pulses because of pulse-on-pulse conditions.
The "Programmable" column defines if the system
is user-programmable or fixed to only generate a specific signal type and not changeable by the user. Most
of the systems listed can be programmed. Some already come supplied with some pre-programmed threat
simulations.
Look for our next survey on analog-to-digital converters coming in the February 2017 edition.

The Journal of Electronic Defense | December 2016

T

his JED survey examines Flightline and
Portable EW Simulators for testing EW
systems in the following spectrums: RF,
UV, IR and laser spectrum. Prior to flight,
most pilots or EW operators will ask maintenance personnel to verify the operation of the EW equipment. The pilot or EW operator
could just run a typical built-in-test program, but that
mostly ensures the software/firmware is loaded and
all signal connections are intact. To further verify the
correct operation of the EW system, it is desirable to
run a true test signal through the system that in some
ways mimics the signals that would be observed in the
electromagnetic environment. In order to perform this
test, a device is required that a maintainer can use at
the flightline that can generate test signals and couple
these signals into the platforms EW systems.
This verification can vary from the generation of a
single RF tone to the generation of multiple RF pulses
that mimic one or more signal types the system is designed to detect. In the UV, IR and laser spectrums,
signals need to be generated that mimick missile
plumes or laser beams. Because most EW systems will
have more than one sensor to provide a wide field of
view, the simulator needs to be able to stimulate each
sensor to verify its operation. One method is to just
move the signal source around the platform to make
sure all sensors are operating. You may want to check
the complete RF operational range in case more than
one antenna is used in each sector, to cover the operational frequency range; similarly, the same may be
done in multiple IR bands or laser bands.
These testers can vary from a simple handheld signal generator that can simulate a series of RF pulses
or CW tones and can be easily moved around the platform, to a complex combination of signal generators
that, under computer control, can simulate multiple
RF threats and is usually brought to the platform in a
cart. They may attach conformal "hats" or couplers to
the sensors for more accurate stimulation or use freespace radiation. In the UV/IR spectrum, the simulators
simulate a missile plume spectrum by creating a UV or
IR thermal image. A laser threat simulator needs to do
the same with a laser stimulus. These systems can be
complex, but their purpose is to verify operation of the
EW system before the platform leaves the flightline.

63



JED - December 2016

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of JED - December 2016

The View From Here
Conferences Calendar
Courses Calendar
From the President
The Monitor
Washington Report
World Report
Interview: Col Jeffrey N. Aldridge, USAF
Interview: US Rep. Joe Pitts
The Future of Airborne Electronic Attack
Regaining the Advantage – Cognitive Electronic Warfare
Technology Survey: Flightline and Portable EW Simulators
AOC EW Singapore Preview
New Products
Report from the 2016 EW GCC Conference
Crows in the Community
The Heat is On
EW 101
Report from the 2016 AOC CEMA Conference
2016 AOC Award Winners
AOC News
Index of Advertisers
JED Quick Look
JED - December 2016 - cover1
JED - December 2016 - cover2
JED - December 2016 - 3
JED - December 2016 - 4
JED - December 2016 - 5
JED - December 2016 - The View From Here
JED - December 2016 - 7
JED - December 2016 - Conferences Calendar
JED - December 2016 - 9
JED - December 2016 - Courses Calendar
JED - December 2016 - 11
JED - December 2016 - From the President
JED - December 2016 - 13
JED - December 2016 - 14
JED - December 2016 - The Monitor
JED - December 2016 - insert1
JED - December 2016 - insert2
JED - December 2016 - 16
JED - December 2016 - 17
JED - December 2016 - 18
JED - December 2016 - 19
JED - December 2016 - 20
JED - December 2016 - 21
JED - December 2016 - 22
JED - December 2016 - 23
JED - December 2016 - 24
JED - December 2016 - 25
JED - December 2016 - Washington Report
JED - December 2016 - 27
JED - December 2016 - World Report
JED - December 2016 - 29
JED - December 2016 - Interview: Col Jeffrey N. Aldridge, USAF
JED - December 2016 - 31
JED - December 2016 - 32
JED - December 2016 - 33
JED - December 2016 - Interview: US Rep. Joe Pitts
JED - December 2016 - 35
JED - December 2016 - 36
JED - December 2016 - 37
JED - December 2016 - The Future of Airborne Electronic Attack
JED - December 2016 - 39
JED - December 2016 - 40
JED - December 2016 - 41
JED - December 2016 - 42
JED - December 2016 - 43
JED - December 2016 - 44
JED - December 2016 - 45
JED - December 2016 - 46
JED - December 2016 - 47
JED - December 2016 - 48
JED - December 2016 - 49
JED - December 2016 - 50
JED - December 2016 - 51
JED - December 2016 - 52
JED - December 2016 - 53
JED - December 2016 - 54
JED - December 2016 - 55
JED - December 2016 - Regaining the Advantage – Cognitive Electronic Warfare
JED - December 2016 - 57
JED - December 2016 - 58
JED - December 2016 - 59
JED - December 2016 - 60
JED - December 2016 - 61
JED - December 2016 - 62
JED - December 2016 - Technology Survey: Flightline and Portable EW Simulators
JED - December 2016 - 64
JED - December 2016 - 65
JED - December 2016 - 66
JED - December 2016 - 67
JED - December 2016 - 68
JED - December 2016 - 69
JED - December 2016 - 70
JED - December 2016 - AOC EW Singapore Preview
JED - December 2016 - 72
JED - December 2016 - 73
JED - December 2016 - New Products
JED - December 2016 - 75
JED - December 2016 - Report from the 2016 EW GCC Conference
JED - December 2016 - 77
JED - December 2016 - Crows in the Community
JED - December 2016 - 79
JED - December 2016 - The Heat is On
JED - December 2016 - 81
JED - December 2016 - 82
JED - December 2016 - 83
JED - December 2016 - 84
JED - December 2016 - 85
JED - December 2016 - EW 101
JED - December 2016 - 87
JED - December 2016 - 88
JED - December 2016 - 89
JED - December 2016 - Report from the 2016 AOC CEMA Conference
JED - December 2016 - 91
JED - December 2016 - 92
JED - December 2016 - 2016 AOC Award Winners
JED - December 2016 - 94
JED - December 2016 - 95
JED - December 2016 - 96
JED - December 2016 - 97
JED - December 2016 - 98
JED - December 2016 - 99
JED - December 2016 - AOC News
JED - December 2016 - 101
JED - December 2016 - 102
JED - December 2016 - 103
JED - December 2016 - 104
JED - December 2016 - Index of Advertisers
JED - December 2016 - JED Quick Look
JED - December 2016 - cover3
JED - December 2016 - cover4
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